Remedies and Habits for Sore Throat Relief from Acid Reflux

Acid reflux occurs when your stomach contents (primarily digestive juices) back up into your esophagus and mouth. Occasional acid reflux is nothing to worry about, especially if you’ve just had a big meal. However, if you have acid reflux two or more times a week, you may have gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and you should talk to your healthcare provider.

Acid reflux can also be a symptom of other health conditions. They are usually conditions that put pressure, relax, or weaken the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) valve, the ring of muscle that connects the esophagus to the stomach. The LES normally prevents food from moving out of the stomach and back into the esophagus.

Why acid reflux can hurt your throat

When someone has GERD, the LES becomes weak or fails to close tightly, allowing food and stomach acid to flow back into the esophagus. The lining of the esophagus can become inflamed or irritated by these acids, which can lead to a burning pain in the chest and sometimes a sour taste or cough. A sore throat is often one of the symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux disease.

Short-term sore throats from acid reflux are caused by digestive juices burning tissue. A chronic sore throat may indicate that GERD is accompanied by a cough, which increases inflammation, swelling, and a sore throat.

Effects of acid reflux

You can’t ignore chronic acid reflux and hope it goes away. If nothing else, the fluid or sensation in the back of the mouth makes you want to swallow, and it burns back. It only gets worse until you do something.

The best thing you can do if you have GERD complications, other serious health problems, including respiratory problems, or conditions that may be masked by GERD symptoms, is to talk with your healthcare provider.

Serious complications of GERD include:

  • Esophageal erosion: The lining of the esophagus tissue is eroded by acid, so ulcers (ulcers) may develop.
  • Barrett’s esophagus: This refers to damage to the lower part of the esophagus. This is usually the result of repeated exposure to stomach acid. The lining of the esophagus begins to resemble the lining of the intestine.
  • Esophageal cancer: People with more frequent symptoms seem to have a higher risk of developing esophageal cancer.

acid reflux sore throat remedies

Sore throat remedies can help when you have occasional acid reflux. However, the greatest relief you will get is addressing the underlying cause of chronic acid reflux.

Some lifestyle changes may also help. Once you start treating your condition, you’ll find that you don’t need to control your symptoms as much.

When to see a healthcare provider

Contact your doctor if you have any of the following symptoms:

  • chest pain
  • loss of appetite
  • persistent vomiting
  • Problems or pain when swallowing
  • signs of gastrointestinal bleeding, such as vomit that contains blood or looks like coffee grounds, and stool that contains blood or looks black and tarry
  • Unexplained weight loss

lifestyle changes

One of many studies found that quitting smoking not only improved people’s acid reflux episodes, but also their overall quality of life scores.

Some foods are triggers of GERD and should be avoided to prevent a reaction, including:

  • Spicy, minty, greasy food
  • Acidic fruits and juices, such as citrus and tomatoes
  • Coffee, Chocolate, and Other Caffeine Sources
  • carbonated beverages, such as soda, kombucha, and tonic water
  • alcoholic beverages
  • Eat within three hours of bedtime

12 Easy Ways to Eliminate Acid Reflux

Non-prescription drugs

You can get over-the-counter antacids, such as Tums and Rolaids, to help neutralize your stomach acid and reduce symptoms of acid reflux. They’re handy when you’re at a dinner party and you start to get heartburn. However, they are not suitable for everyday use.

There is growing concern about how often we choose to suppress stomach acid to prevent acid reflux. Studies show that about 30% of people who use acid suppressants such as antacids still have symptoms. Some researchers disapprove of suppressing acid production as a way to fight acid reflux, calling it counterintuitive.

Other over-the-counter medicines include:

  • H2-blockers: H2-blockers reduce the amount of acid produced by the stomach. H2 blockers can help heal the esophagus, but not as well as proton pump inhibitors (PPIs). You can buy H2 blockers over the counter, or your healthcare provider can prescribe one.
  • Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs): PPIs reduce the amount of acid produced by the stomach. PPIs are better at treating GERD symptoms than H2 blockers, and they heal the lining of the esophagus in most GERD patients. You can buy PPI over the counter, or your healthcare provider can prescribe it. Healthcare providers may prescribe PPIs for long-term GERD treatment.

sore throat remedies

If acid reflux hurts your throat, you can:

  • have a hot drink
  • Gargle with salt water to reduce inflammation and irritation
  • add honey to hot drinks
  • sucking on lozenges or popsicles


Acid reflux symptoms from GERD are usually manageable, but if you don’t get relief with OTC options or lifestyle changes, you can discuss prescription-strength options (prescription drugs) with your healthcare provider.

You may only need prescription medication to help manage your symptoms until you can change your lifestyle factors and no longer need medication. This may not be the case for everyone. Talk to your practitioner to see what’s right for you.

Your healthcare provider may prescribe the following medicines:

  • Lioresal (baclofen): reduces relaxation of the LES, allowing acid backwashing
  • Prokinetics: Strengthens the LES and helps the stomach empty faster


The best way to deal with a sore throat from acid reflux is to identify and manage the cause of the acid reflux. During this time, you can drink warm beverages, gargle with salt water, and suck on lozenges or popsicles to relieve discomfort.

VigorTip words

If you have a sore throat from acid reflux, it may be time to talk to your healthcare provider. If you haven’t tried lifestyle changes, such as quitting smoking and avoiding spicy foods, you can start there, one at a time.

It’s not easy, but even cutting down on one cigarette or one glass of wine a day can make a difference. The longer you reach your goals, the better you’ll be able to prevent serious complications, such as esophageal erosion and cancer.

Your healthcare provider may discuss other factors with you, including weight, sleep habits, and your diet. If your acid reflux is severe, you can take over-the-counter or even prescription medications to help relieve symptoms and minimize the occurrence of acid reflux.